Adoration in Retreat
Satellites of Love far from Retreat "The oddly named 'The Satellite Program' give the impression that the record is a synthesizer based band prog-rock trip. But far from it, The Satellite Program write and play clever pop music, and it's very good. The band is made up of Mark Malone (singer, songwriter), Chris Ferreira (guitar, solos), Don Anderson (bass) and Marc Winters (drums). Listed on their influence radar are Neil Young, Teenage Fanclub, and My Morning Jacket. In addition Malone lists some brilliant but little known influences such as the excellent Jon Brion and Chris Stamey plus some of the usual suspects. For the most part the record was recorded in a small basement room in Seattle, 'with maybe $2000 worth of recording equipment'. The record began as an EP with a zero-budget, and benefits from a wider choice of songs than the usual 4-5 songs EP. On 'Red Roses in the Snow' lead guitarist Ferreira is given ample time to stretch out with some fine solos. What makes this record stand out is the songwriting quality; Malone writes astute lyrics with strong melodies. Malone spent some of his formative years listening to 'angry young Brits', and despite this has the knack of writing catchy pop songs, which was the last thing angry young Brits produced. The Satellites deserve a much wider audience - simple as that." -- Americana UK 'This Seattle band has kind of slipped under the radar, but they have an excellent sound that falls somewhere between straight-ahead power pop and americana/alt-country. This is apparent right off the bat with 'Laugh When You Tell Me', which jangles with enough grit to please fans of both genres. Other highlights include the rocking 'Inside Man', the midtempo 'Rollaway', 'Red Roses In The Snow', and the moody ballad 'Western Electric' (a great song title for this band's sound). You can listen to the whole thing at their official site, and grab it at CD Baby. Check it out.' -- Absolute Powerpop 'The Satellite Program is a power pop-alt country styled group with real DIY spirit and feel to the music. Some really great guitar noodling and melodies that sound like a marriage of The Old 97's and The Grateful Dead meets Kenny Howes. More than a few tunes are shining through here; notable are 'Coin-Op Proxy' and 'Inside Man.' Singer/songwriter Mark Malone does a good job of adding some feeling to his lyrics and it complements the guitar work nicely. My favorite here is 'Wipeout by Decree' an energy filled song with hot licks that Enuff Znuff would envy.' -- Powerpopaholic.com "...Singer/songwriter Mark Malone is literate and intelligent, writing poetic and honest observations without a cliché in the bunch. I liked the clever Beatles allusions in 'Inside Man.' I like the yearning and the sympathetic observations and just the fact that Malone writes exactly what he feels without falling into the smarmy or pseudo-intellectual traps that a lot of otherwise-smart songwriters fall into. I like the raw feel. Most of the album was recorded in a small basement with lots of packing blankets and other makeshift studio gear, and it sounds like it in the best possible way. There's a very rebellious indie spirit in this music that I really connect with. It feels like a small, out-of-the-way Seattle bar on a rainy day. We get smooth minor chords and some ballads that are very vintage Bowie. Another plus is Malone's singing - he has a quirky, cool voice that fits this style. The picture that comes together is of jangly alt rock/pop, very melodic, with solid guitar work by Chris Ferreira and an earnest approach to songwriting..." -- Jennifer Layton, Indie-music.com Over the course of 13 tracks, the album traces a closely observed journey with wry bemusement and unadorned longing, never settling in one place long enough to overstay it's welcome. Behind the deceptively cheery melodicism of cuts like "Keep Me Around" and "Inside Man" lies a worldly reserve that turns explicit in "Western Electric" and "Protection." The mood swings from the boisterous Americana bliss of "Coin-Op Proxy," to "Rollaway's" mist-shrouded northbound train that fades to a dark, lonely horizon. It's a satisfying trip, with songwriting that is "literate and intelligent; ...poetic and honest observations without a cliché in the bunch." (Indie-music.com) The band members' influences range widely: Neil Young, XTC, Jimmy Webb, The Beatles, Matthew Sweet, Jon Brion, Jimmy Page, Wilco, Teenage Fanclub, Richard Thompson, The Pretenders, Willis Alan Ramsey. The band is: Don Anderson, bass; Chris Ferreira, guitars; Mark Malone, vocals, songwriter, guitar; Marc Winters, drums • Produced & mixed by Bruno Modolo.